TGIF Replay: From 2018

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12 Responses

  1. Captain Kevin says:

    Man, did I ever need to read this one again! Thank you, Michael!

  2. Linn says:

    I became a Christian in an environment where you ” burned out for God.” It became exhausting. I know there will be periods of intense ministry, but when that’s the norm, and more busy work is invented so you look like your “ministering”-RUN! I eventually did, and Elijah’s story was one of the motivators.

  3. Captain Kevin says:

    Linn,
    In my experience, that “ministering” almost always involved doing something at the church building.

  4. LInn says:

    Captain Kevin,

    In my case it was “forced fellowshipping” (otherwise known as “mandatory fun.”). We would all be exhausted at this ministry I worked for, and we would be called out at 8 am on a Saturday morning to go out and sit under a tree and sing worship songs. I put my foot down,. I was raising my sister’s kids due to a really bad family situation, and had just relocated from overseas. It wasn’t required (although it kept me in good graces with my supervisor), and I needed a day off. Church was like work, too, since we all needed to support-raise and have some participation in a local church.

  5. Captain Kevin says:

    Mandatory fun sounds like an absolute nightmare.

  6. Linn says:

    I found it just led to grumpiness and resentment, at least on my part. It was especially tough because some of the staff shared living quarters, so you never had a break.

  7. Officerhoppy says:

    I thought for years that the phrase “well done thou good and faithful servant” meant how I like my steak cooked. Or, as Linn said “burned out”

  8. Linn says:

    Officer Hoppy,
    I love being involved in ministry, and I know there are times that can be intense. But, keeping that pace all the time, with no letup, is what drives many people away or causes illness (physical or mental). My current church keeps an eye on our staff to make sure they have a proper balance of ministry, family time and rest. The same is true for key volunteers (I’m one of those). When I’ve legitimately said I can’t do something, I’m heard and not told that I’m a slacker.

  9. Muff Potter says:

    Linn at 8:11 pm—
    It sounds a lot like a totalitarian dictatorship.
    I left all that crapola many years ago, and it took awhile to learn to breathe again.

  10. Linn says:

    Muff,

    It was a long time ago (90s), but I had no idea how crazy it was until I left, mostly for financial reasons. I could almost consider my work with the Spanish ministry at my church as a part-time job, except there is a realization that people get sick, need down time, etc. And, there is help! If a ministry idea doesn’t launch, there is encouragement instead of criticism. I really like what God allows me to do (as I am currently working on translating three slide sets for the upcoming women’s conference, which I will also be translating “en vivo”-live). I love and thrive on my my church’s approach to ministry.

  11. Officerhoppy says:

    I can only speak for myself but the pace and pressure I felt was self imposed. I wrongly felt the people came because of me. And related to that, i felt people would leave the church if I wasn’t always busy. I felt it was my job to involve myself in everyone’s problems and that i needed to visit every sick person in the hospital. I also felt the pressure to have answers to every issue that arose.

    I too enjoyed my years in ministry but near the end, for my own sanity I delegated a lot and ironically, people didn’t leave and i enjoyed my last 5 years as a pastor.

    As they say i wish i knew then what i know now

  12. Linn says:

    Officer Hoppy,
    I’m really good at creating my own crazy, too. But when I was suddenly a step-in mom to little people, I prayerfully realized that I had to live up to the kid time expectations that I always talked to my students’ parents about. It wasn’t an easy transition for me, but Auntie at home on Saturday morning to watch a soccer game, even if Grandma could take them, meant a lot to them, as did nightly stories, fun in the bathtub, and reviewing flashcards. I was very responsible about work/ministry, but I knew there had to be a “no” button. The interesting thing, which my colleagues began to notice, was I actually had better results because I wasn’t always with them all the time, trying to create some kind of artificial feeling of fellowship. I still push hard, but I’m also known for not starting anything until noon on Saturday because I’m spending some regrouping time at home-and watching old Looney Toons!

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